SUISUN CITY — If you live in Suisun City and want to turn your yard into a thriving, edible ecosystem, Sustainable Solano would like to hear from you.

The grassroots local nonprofit that started in Benicia is expanding its work to Suisun City and is looking for homeowners interested in creating demonstration “seed plot” food forests in their backyards.

Sustainable Solano will be taking applications through March 16 and will visit each applicant’s site before making a selection sometime in late March.

What is called a permaculture food forest would include using rainwater and gray water from the laundry, a drip irrigation system and sheet mulch. The plants would include fruit trees, berries and plants that are beneficial to insects.

Both the owner and a cadre of volunteers would spend four weekends putting in the food forest whose layout would be cooperatively designed by the homeowner and Sustainable Solano.

The goal is to create between an 1,800- and 2,000-square-foot “oasis of productivity and beauty to nourish you and inspire others,” according to the application that’s available online.

In return for Sustainable Solano helping set up the food forest, the homeowners would be expected to make a five-year commitment to take care of it and open it to the public twice a year as part of an annual garden tour.

“You definitely have to have a green thumb,” Sustainable Solano Executive Director Elena Karoulina said.

Sustainable Solano started in 2016 when supporters of Benicia Community Gardens changed the name as part of its goal to inspire and help the rest of the county to locally grow, regionally source, cook and enjoy healthy food.

The group set up two private gardens and a public one in Vallejo in 2017 and more recently started gardens in Fairfield at Mission Solano, Suisun Valley Elementary School and a private home. They are now looking for one public and one private location in Suisun City and plan to start a similar effort in Vacaville and Dixon later this year.

The group hosted a forum Saturday with author and permaculture expert Denise Rushing and plans a sustainable landscape class at 6 p.m. Thursday at The Salvation Army’s Kroc Center at 586 E. Wigeon Way.

For more information and the application, go to